The Cathedral of Sansepolcro, also known as the “Concattedrale” of Saint John the Evangelist, is the oldest and most important Catholic church in Sansepolcro. Its foundation was built in the year 1000 and legend has it that the laying of its first stone corresponded with the birth of the city.
The cathedral was initially dedicated to the Four Evangelists and the Holy Sepulchre, whose relics, according to tradition, were brought from the Holy Land by two pilgrims Egidio and Arcano, the founders of Sansepolcro.
Today the cathedral has a 14th century shape with three aisles. The style of the building is undoubtedly Romanesque, identifiable by its round arches.
The circular window above the façade shows its Gothic influence, while the rose window was restored in 1937 using original fragments.
The Cathedral or “Duomo” is a must-see for lovers of art and beauty. Inside, there is the main altar dating back to the 14th century, six side altars and the Chapel of the Holy Face. In this chapel, there is a very rare wooden crucifix that has oriental origins and dates back to the time of Charlemagne.
The central nave has a trussed ceiling, restored in the 20th century, and the side aisles are cross-vaulted. Immediately upon entering the church, on the left, there is a baptismal font dating back to the second half of the 16th century. A silver covering was made between 2011 and 2012 to commemorate the millenary of the Cathedral Basilica.
On the counter-facade there are two splendid glazed terracottas by the Della Robbia school that portray Saints Benedict the Abbot and Bishop Biagio.
The Renaissance imprints inside the cathedral are extraordinarily beautiful. There is the Crucifixion by Bartolomeo Della Gatta dating back to 1486, the Adoration of the Shepherds by Durante Alberti and the Virgin of Mercy by Raffaello Schiaminossi.
On the main altar, you can see the polyptych of the Resurrection, the work of the 14th century Siena School artist Niccolò di Segna. Near the sacristy, there is a terracotta tabernacle by Andrea della Robbia.
Along the left aisle, there is another masterpiece, the Ascension of Christ by Perugino. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to describe all the wonders housed in the Sansepolcro Cathedral. Here we can barely mention half of them.
The visit to this sacred place will touch you because of the intensity of its treasures that surround you and for the atmosphere of peace you find inside. It’s like a sacred museum within the cathedral.
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